Star: (S01E02) “The Devil You Know”

It’s a night of secrets, threats, lies & what you won’t do…or be willing to do for money and fame. The usual and customary.

In the beginning… Carlotta punches Jahil in the face for continuing to pursue “the girls” Then Carlotta & Jahil beef on what happened to Mary, the drugs & his role in it, so Carlotta threatens to tell “the girls” Yet Carlotta had the girls, when Mary died and lost them. So Jahil threatens to tell… “the girls”  Derek (Quincy Brown) is threatened by one of “the girls” because he’s falling in love with her. *

Later that day, it’s revealed Alexandria has been using daddy’s credit cards, so Daddy Crane (Lenny Kravitz)  & Mama Rose (Naomi Campbell) *  show up to take her home. Shocked to find, she’s show biz royalty, privileged and could meet their financial needs, Star is pissed off.  Derek is angry because she lied, he thought her mama was dead!  And she may as well be, proclaimed Alexandria. Mama Rose is broken and has a drinking problem.  S
o Crane, promises he’ll help Alexandria  with her dreams,  if she’ll come home to help with her mama and drop the trash, (Star) who he feels is a con artist and Alexandria doesn’t need, as Star listens. 

Later that day, Jahil wants Star to drop the other two girls & he’ll produce her solo. She refuses & goes to Crane for help. During this time, Mama Rose, lunches with Alexandria with a request she come home. She’s left Crane again, ‘trying to stop drinking & feels she can be produced @ their own studio.  Here we learn Mama Rose had a dream and regrets she did not pursue it.  (Modeling of course)  This is probably the start of her drinking problems. Alexandria promises to “think about it” Meanwhile, on the other side of town at “The W” hotel, Star tries to convince Crane, to produce their demo… in the bedroom.  We find her in a bubble bath, washing up and singing while Crane is half naked on the bed.  Star later admits she resorted to what she knows “how to do” when in desperation. Yes, she’s “a ‘ho, a thirsty ‘ho” Yet Mama Rose, came in before the deed was done.  She owed it and apologized to Alexandria, yet it’s still “ewww” and nasty!

This episode marks the arrival of Pastor Harris, (Tyrese Gibson) in what I hope is recurring. He is too cute as he proclaims his more than like for Carlotta and undying devotion to be in her corner. * 
In other sightings: Jahil is looking for money & kisses Maggie,  (Helena Kalliniotes) an old lady in the club for $30 thousand.
Later,  Alexandria walks away from the security of her parents, for they still refuse to hear, honor and respect her wishes. She’s  returning to the salon with “the hairdresser” who tells Crane to stop chasing little girls & work on his sucky music! * That same night, Derek asks his bae, Alexandria, not to leave him; please stay. They make up* 

Finally, Simone’s having nightmares about the child molester and his death, so she takes meds, drinks and then sings a gospel song at church before collapsing from this lethal combination. At the same time,  someone who looks like the child molester approaches the girl’s former social worker, looking for “his daughter!”

And so this is the first official episode. I find it better than the Pilot; because I didn’t want more after seeing it (my compadre actually went to sleep on it) yet here we are. I’ll continue to watch, because I’m curious to find the hidden jewels in performances and why we should care. Although right now overall, it’s not working for me, but “there’s gotta be a pony in here somewhere” and I did find star (*) moments.  Maybe it’s the casting of “the girls” or the need to tell this very familiar story in another way.  The formula may be tried and true, yet is it always better to go with, “The Devil you know?” 

Key:  Asterisks (*) are true Star moments/performances and worth the “awww